In March of this year, the U.S. government decided to part with 9,861 Bitcoins, resulting in a substantial gain of approximately $216 million for the treasury. At that time, BTC’s value ranged between $20,000 and $22,000. Jumping ahead to the present, Bitcoin is currently trading at around $34,000 and is generating optimism in the financial markets. Had the U.S. government held onto its BTC until now, it could have garnered a sum of $322 million, given the current BTC price. Consequently, the government missed out on $116 million in potential earnings by selling their Bitcoins prematurely.
How the U.S. Government Gains Bitcoin Holdings
The U.S. government obtains Bitcoins through the confiscation of assets linked to criminal cases, fraudulent schemes, and various illegal activities orchestrated by wrongdoers. All the Bitcoins seized are placed under government control, allowing them the option to sell them on the open market. An additional 41,490 BTC was seized from James Zhong, a scam artist who admitted to wire fraud. Zhong manipulated transactions within the dark web and illicitly acquired BTC’s from the Silk Road marketplace.
Furthermore, the government has announced its intention to sell the remaining 41,490 BTC later this year, which currently holds a value of $1.4 billion. In addition to the Bitcoins seized from Zhong, the government maintains a BTC reserve worth $5.5 billion. BTC has witnessed a remarkable surge, increasing by nearly 102% from January to October 2023. Starting the year at $16,500, it has doubled in value, reaching $34,000 this month. This remarkable ascent has occurred despite challenging market conditions, often referred to as a bear market.
At present, the price of BTC stands at $34,000, showing a marginal 1% decline within the past 24 hours. It’s essential to note that Bitcoin is down by approximately 51% from its all-time high of $69,044, achieved in November 2021. It has now been three years since the leading cryptocurrency made an attempt to surpass its previous all-time high.